Embroiderers stage heritage exhibition

For the past year there has been a thread running through the activities of the Chesterfield Embroiderers’ Guild linking – to a special exhibition.

Over and Over and Over Again at West Studios will be the culmination of  months of planning, stitching and making by the 33 members of the organisation, which is part of the national guild.

The exhibition was the brainchild of Antonia Stanford, (pictured second left), who has a special interest in historic Derbyshire and especially the county’s links to the birth of the industrial revolution and cotton and weaving factories.

She thought it would be a good idea to celebrate the Derwent Valley World Heritage Site and the Arkwright mills with a themed exhibition, and her peers have relished the challenge.

Last September they visited the Masson Mill Museum at Matlock Bath for inspiration and they also gained some new ideas following a talk on creating miniature houses at one of their monthly meetings.

The exhibition will consist of two group projects – a display of digitally printed cushions and a selection of fascinating ‘room boxes’ based on aspects of mill life. Some of the members have done additional research to enhance their boxes and even incorporated aspects of their personal history.

In addition to these projects the women have also been working on their own work based on the mill.

“The work is individual and very diverse but all linked to the theme. It has been a very interesting project and one we have all enjoyed,” said Barbara Meeke, (pictured front centre).

What has pleased them all even more is that they are to be able to exhibit at West Studios in Sheffield Road, a relatively new exhibition space for the town, and part of Chesterfield College.

“We have been moaning for years that there is not a enough exhibition space in Chesterfield, so were all delighted when this gallery area at West Studios opened.

“We were very keen to display our work there as we really want to raise awareness of the marvellous facilities now available in the town. The staff there have been very helpful and were just as keen to have us there.”

Over and Over and Over Again will be launched on April 14 and runs until May 11. The studios are open from 10am-4pm Monday to Friday and 10am-1pm on Saturday.

Although the guild members are all women at the moment, the group is open to everyone and they would love to welcome new members. To find out more about them go to emreg.org.uk and click on chesterfield.

To find out more about the West Studios go to weststudios.co.uk